How to Add a Background Picture to PowerPoint Slides

Personalize your next PowerPoint presentation with one of your photos

What to Know

  • Design > Format Background > Picture or texture fill and select the desired image.
  • Move the transparency slider to set how transparent you want the image to be.

This article explains how to use any image as the background for one or more slides in your PowerPoint presentation. Instructions apply to PowerPoint 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, and PowerPoint for Microsoft 365.

Add and Format a Background Image

To add a picture as the background image for a PowerPoint slide:

  1. Open the PowerPoint presentation and go to the slide where you want to add a background image. If you want to add it to all of your slides, add it to any slide.

  2. Select Design > Format Background. Or, right-click on the slide and select Format Background. The Format Background pane opens.

    A screenshot showing the Format Background in PowerPoint.
  3. Select Picture or texture fill.

    A screenshot showing the PowerPoint Format Background pane.
  4. Select File to insert a picture from your computer or network drive, select Clipboard to insert a picture you copied, or select Online (or Clip Art in PowerPoint 2010) to search for a picture online.

    A screenshot showing how to choose an option for Insert Picture From in PowerPoint
  5. Locate the picture you want to use and select Insert.

    A screenshot showing the Insert background image feature in PowerPoint.
  6. Set the transparency level for the picture using the Transparency slider.

    A screenshot showing the Set transparency option for background image in PowerPoint.
  7. Choose Reset Background to remove the photo so you can start over, Close to apply the picture as the background to one slide, or Apply to All to apply the picture as the background to all the slides in the presentation.

To remove the background image, open the Format Background pane and choose Solid Fill or another option.

Choose the Background Picture Carefully

By default, the picture you choose for the background of your slide is stretched to fit the slide. To avoid distortion, choose a horizontal format picture and one with high resolution.

A picture with high resolution appears crisp and clear, while a picture with low resolution appears blurry when it is enlarged and stretched to fit the slide. Stretching the picture can result in a distorted image.

Was this page helpful?